Tokyo, October 5, 2016 - Astellas Pharma Inc. (President and CEO: Yoshihiko Hatanaka, “Astellas”) today announced that the "Flying Star Fund," a social contribution fund run by its employees, will donate 6 wheelchair vans to 6 welfare facilities in Japan. Since 1997, Flying Star Fund has donated several wheelchair vans every year through this program, and donation reaches a total of 195 wheelchair vans including the 6 vans to be donated this year.
The Flying Star Fund was launched as a small but sustainable social contribution activity by Astellas' employees to create a fund that contributes to the health and well- being of people in Japan. Astellas employees can voluntarily join to donate 100 yen every month from their wages. Astellas matches the same amount of money donated by employees to donate wheelchair vans once a year.
The 6 wheelchair vans will be donated to the following welfare facilities:
Kokoro in Hitachinaka-shi, Ibaraki Prefecture
Social Welfare Juridicial AINOWA Organization in Adachi-ku, Tokyo
Happiness Asahi-kai in Minami-Alps-shi, Yamanashi Prefecture
Marusan in Moriyama-shi, Shiga Prefecture
Support Center Heart in Yamatokoriyama-shi, Nara Prefecture
Ringo House in Sanuki-shi, Kagawa Prefecture
In addition to wheelchair vans, the Flying Star Fund donated a total of 2 million yen to NPO Japan Good Toy Committee, NPO Japan CliniClowns Association, NPO Japan Hospital Clowns Association and Shine On! Kids, as in previous years. The donated funds will be used to carry out “hospital toy caravans,” an event which toy consultants visit hospitals with toys to support hospitalized children and their parents, and hospital clown events in order to bring smiles to hospitalized children.
*The name "Flying Star" comes from the corporate symbol of Astellas, a beautiful shining star moving toward the future.
About the wheelchair vans to be donated
Out of the 6 vehicles to be donated this time, 2 are microvans equipped with a folding wheelchair ramp and an electric winch to pull a wheelchair passenger into the vehicle, and the remaining 4 are ordinary vans (Attached photo) which can pull 2 wheelchair passengers at a time with the same functionality. The facilities to receive these vehicles have been selected from those that support people with physical disabilities lead more independent lives. The vehicles will be used to provide ridings for wheelchair users including rides between home and the facilities.